NEW YORK (Aug. 1)
The U.S. government has placed Dr. Hans Sewering, one of Germany’s leading physicians, on its “watch list” of undesirable aliens after the Justice Department found he had participated in Nazi-sponsored acts of persecution, the World Jewish Congress reported.
The ban on Sewering’s entry into the United States follows by a year and a half his resignation as elected president of the World Medical Association after documents found in German archives were released showing that Sewering had been a member of the Nazi Party and SS.
The WJC had asked the U.S. Justice Department to investigate Sewering’s wartime activities.
According to the uncovered documents, in 1943 Sewering signed an order transferring a handicapped 14-year-old girl to a so-called “healing clinic,” where she was soon killed, along with hundreds of other patients, in the Nazis’ “euthanasia” program.
Although Sewering acknowledged signing the transfer order, he had denied knowing the clinic was a euthanasia center. He had said that the Roman Catholic Church, which ran the clinic, would support his claim.
Instead, the hospital’s director and four nuns on staff rejected his explanation. They released a statement saying, “In the interest of the memory of these criminally murdered people, we cannot remain silent any longer.
“The sisters knew that these severely physically and mentally handicapped people would be exterminated as so-called ‘unworthy lives,’” they said.
The Justice Department said Sewering had been placed on the “watch list” for having “ordered, incited, assisted or otherwise participated” in persecution “because of race, religion, national origin or political opinion.”
Charges against Sewering were first made by the German magazine Der Spiegel. The campaign to bar Sewering from becoming the medical association’s president was initiated by Professor Michael Kochen of the University of Gottingen, Germany, and doctors from the United States, Canada and Israel.
Sewering lives in Dachau, Germany, the site of the wartime death camp.